Services Cut

Rhondda Cynon Taf Council has to save £63m over three years. They’ve known this for years yet they keep dragging their feet. As anyone with a primary school education knows the longer you wait to start paying the more you have to pay when you do eventually start.

Big cuts to senior management and big cuts to middle management should have already been made – but they haven’t! OK, maybe turkeys don’t vote for Christmas but these Tory cuts to public services are unprecedented. Everyone knew they were coming and everyone who could have made it easier just buried their heads in the sand. That would be an ostrich not a turkey by the way.

So, what is the latest nightmare scenario:

  • Cuts look set to include library opening hours, budget and staff structures within youth services and subsided bus routes
  • Llantrisant Nursery is in line to close with fees and staffing being revised at other day nurseries
  • There will also be revised staffing at the council’s One4All contact centres

The council hopes to make savings of around £1.1m through the cuts. Great news eh? Mmm, not really… as they still have to find another £61.9m to cut.

Chancellor George Osborne is to introduce a Comprehensive Spending review (CSR) later this month in order to screw poor people, even though his family business made £6 million in a property deal with a developer based in a tax haven.

Wallpaper firm Osborne & Little teamed up with a secretive corporation in the British Virgin Islands, to draw up plans to redevelop its former London headquarters into housing. The companies jointly applied for planning permission for around 45 flats and houses, and once given the go-ahead, Osborne and Little sold its site to the offshore firm for £6,088,000.

Just goes to show that he doesn’t give a shit about anyone except himself.

Leader of RCT, Andrew Morgan (£53,000) said: “Reductions in the levels of service we provide are simply unavoidable. As far as we can, we want to avoid removing services completely.

“The council needs to achieve initial savings of around £27m to set a balanced and legal budget for 2016/17 financial year based upon forecasting prior to the CSR. Outside these amendments to service levels we will seek to make the further savings necessary through continued efficiencies and smarter ways of working to deliver services.

“All public sector funding flows from London, so the Welsh Government will not know how much Wales’ funding has been cut until the CSR is announced meaning local authorities cannot consider their own budget setting processes until December.

“This will mean a huge rush to set a balanced budget by the legally set date of the March 11.

“On top of the cuts by stealth the public sector are set to experience through the UK Government’s changes to National Insurance and other areas, this timescale makes an already difficult financial situation even worse. As councillors we are faced with no alternative other than to respond.”

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